I love the power of a good instrumental song. Sometimes they can be energizing or even relaxing depending on the band’s intent with the song. Some bands use an instrumental song to display a different, sometimes softer side. And, sometimes an instrumental is a collection of left over riffs and drum parts that didn’t make the final cut. Or, perhaps they just couldn’t find the words to go with the music. However they are composed, the instrumental song is a track I look for and hope to find on any album; though there are some bands where it’s almost an expectation. This list is 25 word-less songs that I find essential to my music library. I wouldn’t sweat over the exact order, but yeah the ones at or near the top of this list are definitely my favorites. I know there are many more instrumental songs out there, but these are mine…so to speak. This list is also limited to only three per band and only one band made this list three times. Enjoy my top 2!
2. Hell’s Kitchen – Dream Theater
As you can probably tell, I have fondness for Dream Theater’s instrumental songs. This one is the third and final song of my list and if I didn’t make a 3-song rule I might have a few more Dream Theater songs to talk about…obviously my favorite from them. I like the diversity in this song; I can listen to it to relax and I have used it as my opening song and/or closing song on a run. It helps keep my mind at ease when I begin a run and wonder to myself why am I running. By the time the song is over, my heart rate is regulated and I can begin a long run with mostly thrash and death metal to keep me motivated. The attraction here is the lengthy guitar solos and of course combined with the progressive elements makes the song pretty damn perfect.
1. The Ultra-Violence – Death Angel
The main attraction to this song for me is it’s just so raw and full of aggression. These guys were just teenagers when they recorded it back in 1987 for their first album, The Ultra-Violence. This song was also featured in a burger commercial. I have to believe that someone had to know about this band to select that song. This song isn’t something one would just stumble upon while looking for background music to a guy eating a burger. Metalheads are everywhere! Anyway, I am going to let the music do the talking. Thanks for reading my list of 25 favorite instrumental songs. My next list will be 30 intros that instantly grabbed me. Thanks to Mik for inspiring me to do a list of my own on that subject.
Throughout my childhood there have been many films that have captured my impressionable imagination and then warped and raped it. The Secret of Nimh, The Dark Crystal, The Brave Little Toaster, Labyrinth, Dumbo, Watership Down, etc. They were all able to lure me in with colors, cuteness, and imagination and then rip the rug up from under me and show me the dark, seedy underbelly of the world in all its twisted glory. I don’t know why, but I always tended to gravitate toward this style of film in my young age (and well into my teenage years and adulthood). Sitting at the top of horrifically cute films lies the 1971 cinematic masterpiece Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory starring the great Gene Wilder in the role he was born to play; the magically mad Willy Wonka. From the colorful cinematography to the densely dark under-themes of consumerism and greed the film didn’t shy away for a moment from the fact it was luring young kids into its mind-rape Ford Econoline van with pretty colors and promises of candy.
Another aspect of Willy Wonka that cements it as one of the greatest cinematic achievements is its soundtrack. From happy and uplifting ‘Pure Imagination’ to nightmare inducing boat ride song the music of the flick covered just about every reachable aspect of places ones imagination can go. And I’ll be damned if they weren’t catchy songs. Don’t tell me you don’t find yourself humming the Oompa Loompa songs from time to time. It was simply a quirky, fun, and occasionally dark bit of music. And do you know what else is quirky, fun, and occasionally dark (ok, a bit more than occasionally)? The long-standing oddball band, Primus.
Album: Storm. This is their debut
Release Date: 3 Sep 14
Genre: Stoner / Hard Rock
Length: 44 Minutes
FFO: Kyuss, Bong Cauldron, Gringo, Vista Chino Read the rest of this entry →
Album: Timelapse; this is their fourth album
Release Date: 3 Nov 14
Genre: Avant-Garde / Progressive / Post Death Metal
Length: 43 Minutes
Location: Italy Read the rest of this entry →
Album: The Tyranny of Will
Previous Albums: Worse Than Dead (2013); Exhumed/Iron Reagan Split (2014); Spoiled Identity EP (2014).
Genre: Hardcore / Crossover Thrash / Punk
Songs: 24 (25 if you have the bonus track)
Length: 32 Minutes
From: Richmond, VA, USA
FFO: Municipal Waste, S.O.D., M.O.D., D.R.I., Cro-Mags, Anthrax, Nuclear Assault, Bio-Hazard Read the rest of this entry →
Label: Pelagic Records
Release Date: Sept. 15th, 2014
Studio Albums: Exit Eden (2011), Iron Chest (2012)
Location: Berlin, Germany
Missed Reviews: Killswitch Engage; Bullet For My Valentine; Ghost Brigade; Toxic Holocaust; Skeletonwitch; Cradle of Filth
If I had it my way I would by every album I want with the money that grows on this tree outside. But, since the world doesn’t work like that some potential album purchases get pushed to the wayside until a time arises when the wallet fairy says it’s time to buy. In some cases, like with Ghost Brigade, I never knew they existed. So, thanks to people like you, readers, fellow bloggers, and my Metal State cohorts, I get introduced to all kinds of bands, hence Ghost Brigade. This segment is something I never did before, but I thought it would be cool to catch up on a few things I never got around to or freshly introduced to. If you are like me, I hope you find something you like. Enjoy!
Killswitch Engage – Disarm The Descent (2013)
Killswitch Engage is a band that was never really on my radar, but I could count on them for some pretty cool songs off each album; not to mention one cover I am really fond of. In fact, by the time I heard of the band I didn’t even realize they were on a second vocalist in Howard Jones. So, when I heard Jesse Leach was returning to the band I barely noticed there was ever much of a difference from the old to the most recent of their albums at the time. When news of the latest album broke, I figured I would get around to it…well, that time is now.
I have to say my generalized opinion has changed a bit from my previous position. I rather enjoy the new work. I still only hear barely a difference in vocal style from Jones back to Leach, but music I find more attractive than past endeavors from Killswitch camp. I felt most of their songs were a bit choppy whereas the Disarm the Descent has a smoother cadence and flow. Overall, a little bummed I didn’t grab it upon release, but I am happy to have it now and have given it several pleasurable spins.
Tags: Bullet for my Valentine, Chemistry of Consciousness, Cradle of Filth, Disarm the Descent, Ghost Brigade, killswitch engage, metal, Serpents Unleashed, Skeletonwitch, Temper Temper, The Manticore and Other Horrors, Thrash, Toxic Holocaust, Until Fear No Longer Defines Us
Genre: Cinematic / Expressive / Progressive / Moody / Atmospheric / A Pinch of Desert Rock / Experimental
Length: 47 Minutes
Release Date: 23 Sep 2014
Albums: This is their 3rd studio album.
Location: Arizona, US
For fans of: Isis, Palms Read the rest of this entry →
When you think of metal and their country of origin, do you automatically think of the US or Europe? Is Australia the first country that comes to mind when thinking about cool metal bands? Perhaps you should start thinking about Australia a little more often. It seems like as each day passes there are more bands popping up from down under well worth checking out.
Undermine the Supremacy is one I am focusing on today that slipped their band info into our inbox. Thank you for that, by the way. This Queensland five-piece is all about metalcore, you should know. I am not going to spell out how bone-crunching their songs are or how deep the vocalist can growl. I won’t waste any of your time talking about their chunky riffs or headbanging cadence either. Why do all that when you can just check it out for yourself. Go ahead. Hit that play button! If you enjoy the bombastic breakdowns of metalcore, you’ll have a hard time hitting the stop button.
For fans of: Parkway Drive, Killswitch Engage, Heaven Shall Burn, Calaban, Lamb of God.
Album: Slab City
Label: Napalm Records
Release Date: Sept. 5th, 2014
Genre: Desert Rock
Studio Albums: Disastronaught (2012), Corned Beef Colossus E.P. (2013)
Location: London, U.K.